Your morning roundup for Nov. 14, the day we learned airport security stops terrorists, not kleptomaniacs. Video via Michael L. Got any stories or photos for us? Tip your editors.
What we watched: Only if we could mute the color commentator. I'm looking at you, Cris Collinsworth. When Tom Brady hurled a deep bomb to Deon Branch during SNF (which fell incomplete), Collinsworth, reeking of a self-satisfying "Look at me analyze parts of the play you didn't even notice!" smugness, presumptively declared that Branch had pushed off. In a spectacular twist of fate, NBC slowmo replayed Branch's route and swiftly squashed Collinsworth claim, as Branch never came close to committing any sort of penalty. To make matters worse, Collinsworth shrugged it off by claiming something to the effect of "you couldn't really tell on that replay."
I don't need color commentary during sporting events. I do that all by my lonesome in my head. Or out loud, if the mood strikes. The core issue, really, is the color commentator's need to feel superior. That, because he has this job, because he's elevated to some higher level of intrinsic understanding, he must spread his enlightened seed at every opportunity. Congratulations, you can see the whole field while I look through the narrow view of a television camera. Let me watch in peace. All I need is the play-by-play guy to fill in the names of third string linebackers while occasionally peppering in mentions of Tom Brady's completion percentage.
In which a new CBA is still far from completion: "The NBA players' union requested the weekend to examine the owners' latest proposal. The feedback as of Sunday night: Not good. The players union executive committee met for two hours Sunday night to examine the proposal before deciding whether to present it to all 400-some players for ratification Monday. The committee will first meet with player reps Monday morning at 9 a.m., but one of the new wrinkles that the committee is finding difficult to accept, sources said, is an unlimited escrow system. The escrow system would assure that owners would be reimbursed for however much they exceed the negotiated amount of basketball-related income allowed to be spent on player salaries. In the current seven-page proposal, a copy of which was obtained by ESPN The Magazine, the players have a choice of selecting a 50-50 split of BRI or a 49-51 band." [ESPN]
Not every LSU player goes onto NFL glory: "Former LSU football player Charles Scott was arrested early Sunday in the rape of an 18-year-old woman at his Prairieville home, according to an Ascension Parish Sheriff's Office spokesman. Deputies went to Scott's home, at 36604 Plantation Court Blvd., about 4 a.m. after someone reported a disturbance at the house, said Ascension Parish Chief Deputy Tony Bacala. While early details were sketchy, Bacala said that deputies learned that the disturbance at the house was 'a result of an 18 year old alleging she was raped by Charles Edward Scott Jr.' Deputies obtained a warrant for Scott at 12:30 p.m., Bacala said. Scott, 23, had been detained since the rape was reported and was immediately arrested, Bacala said. Scott was booked into Ascension Parish jail on one count of simple rape. Bail has not been set." [The Advocate]
Fighting is wrong, but not really: "Cutler had his own beefs. Lions defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh ripped off his helmet from the back in the second quarter. There was no penalty. Tackle Nick Fairley was called for roughing the passer when he drove Cutler into the turf in the end zone long after the ball was out. ‘Crossed the line?' Bears coach Lovie Smith said when asked about Cutler's helmet going flying. ‘It's safe to say you shouldn't do that. I'll leave it at that.' There was plenty of focus on the mini brawl after Moore leveled Stafford. Moore admitted he was wrong but said, ‘When you go toward my livelihood and you're grabbing my neck and it seems like you are trying to hurt me, you just can't let that go.' Said the Lions' Johnson: ‘You can't hit our quarterback and expect us not to come back at you.'" [Chicago Tribune]
Your eHow Necessary Football Skills Interlude:
Out with the old, in with the really new: "One of the most respected — even revered — players in the club's recent era, Mike Matheny, will be formally introduced as the 49th manager in team history on Monday at 11 a.m. CT. The club announced its decision, which comes after less than two weeks of deliberation, on Sunday evening. Matheny takes over for Tony La Russa, who retired on Halloween after 16 seasons at the helm of the Cardinals. His hire represents a significant change in direction for an organization that has leaned on experienced managers for the past three decades. Each of the team's past three full-time managers, La Russa, Joe Torre and Whitey Herzog, had previously made the playoffs as a manager before being hired. The last man who didn't fit that profile was another former Gold Glover in St. Louis, Ken Boyer, who managed from 1978-80 after winning five Gold Gloves as a third baseman with the Cardinals." [MLB.com]
No, we will not let you forget this article from two weeks ago, Bill: "Tebow is clearly not making strides as a passer. That can't be sugarcoated after his extremely conservative approach Sunday (2-for-8, 69 yards passing). But there's no denying that Tebow is a winner. So Broncos executive VP of football operations John Elway and head coach John Fox will likely stick with Tebow for the foreseeable future despite his weaknesses as a passer. After all, winning is more important than effective pocket-passing." [ESPN]
Merch: Managing editor Tom Scocca and contributing editor Drew Magary have both written books. You can buy Scocca's Beijing Welcomes You: Unveiling the Capital City of the Future here, and Magary's The Postmortal here. Now do it.
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